Pittsburgh’s bullpen squandered a good start for All-Star Mitch Keller by giving up a late run and hit left off Saturday night.
Given a second chance less than 24 hours later, seven Pirates took turns defeating the dangerous Arizona Diamondbacks.
Ji Man Choi hit a two-run homer, Pittsburgh’s bullpen combined for four hits and the Pirates ended a four-game losing streak with a 4-2 win over the Diamondbacks on Sunday.
“It’s always nice to have a second chance the next day to redeem yourself,” said Pirates reliever Colin Holderman, who allowed an eighth-inning hit after giving up Saturday’s tying home run.
Choi homered off Zach Davies (1-5) in the second inning and the Pirates bullpen took turns shutting down the Diamondbacks, a day after giving up a late lead in a 3-2 loss to Arizona.
Osvaldo Bido (1-1) allowed a hit in 1 1/3 innings for his first major league win and Jared Triolo hit an RBI single in the ninth for a two-run lead. All-star closer David Bednar drew a ninth-inning walk for his 17th save in 18 chances after giving up the game-winning hit the night before.
“We played a really good game against one of the best teams in baseball and I’m proud of the way our group finished on this All-Star break road trip,” Pirates manager Derek Shelton said. “They did a very good job.”
Alek Thomas homered for the second straight game for the Diamondbacks, who failed to score a runner from third three times. Arizona has lost five of seven but is still heading to the All-Star Game tied with the Los Angeles Dodgers atop the NL West at 52-39.
“Probably a little bit more frustrating day for me,” Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. “We had some chances to score some runs. We did not do it.
Davies allowed four runs and two home runs in a no-decision against the New York Mets in his last start.
The long drive hurt him again Sunday when Choi hit his third home run of the season to center field. Jack Suwinski put the Pirates up 3-2 with a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning.
Davies allowed three runs and five hits with five strikeouts in 5 1/2 innings.
“Zach, to me, was very good, but his designated hitter hit him with a two-run home run that changed the momentum of the game,” Lovullo said.
The Diamondbacks showed their speed to score a run off Carmen Mlodzinski in the first inning.
Geraldo Perdomo started a double steal breaking early from second and scored when Pirates catcher Austin Hedges threw the ball up center trying to catch the runner.
Thomas provided a dose of power in the third inning, hitting a solo home run to right to tie the game at 2, but the Diamondbacks didn’t put up much of a fight the rest of the way.
SANTANA’S FIRST TIME
The Diamondbacks put a lot of pressure on teams with their speed, particularly All-Star Corbin Carroll.
Knowing Carroll’s speed, Pirates shortstop Tucupita Marcano rushed a throw in the eighth with a runner on third base. His pitch was short, but first baseman Carlos Santana picked up the ball to get the out and save the run.
“Santana has played as well as anyone in the first half of the season first,” Shelton said. “It doesn’t speed up (for him). He shows you how much pressure they put on you because Carroll can run, but Carlos is a veteran and he handled himself that way.”